LAYTON -- Two hotly contested propositions centering around a development and a presidential race featuring Utah favorite son Mitt Romney have voters lining up at the lone early voting poll in Davis County's largest city.
Poll workers at the Davis County Library Central Branch in Layton are reporting early-voting lines going out the door and wrapping around the building during peak voting hours.
"Layton is really busy," Davis County Election Director Pat Beckstead said of the library at 155 N. Wasatch Drive. "There are some hot topics in Layton. So it is bringing out more people."
County election officials, in response, have brought in more electronic voting machines.
"We have all of our resources out there that the (library) will hold," Beckstead said, including moving the machines closer together to make room for more.
Because of the close quarters, a privacy screen has been set up around each machine.
But even with the additional machines, the wait to vote there has been between 15 to 20 minutes during the busiest times of the day.
"That is just the nature of the thing," Beckstead said of the election. "I think it is wonderful that we are getting people out to vote. I'd like to see more."
Among the reasons for the high local voter turnout are two citywide propositions on the ballot dealing with transforming 107 acres of farm land on the west side of the city into a multi-use commercial village center similar to Station Park in Farmington.
One proposition creates a zone addressing the village center concept for the open ground currently owned by a subsidiary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The second proposition allows the city to apply the village center zone to the property.
But neighbors of the land between 2200 to 2700 West, just off West Hill Field Road, have organized in opposing the propositions.
The group contends that, if approved, the project will disrupt their quality of life by introducing more traffic and too many public safety concerns to the area.
There is also an organized citizen's group working in favor of the propositions and the village center concept they would allow.
Having the propositions on the ballot likely is behind a surge in voting, Mayor Steve Curtis said.
"The propositions come into play because they concern a lot of citizens," he said.
There are groups on both sides of the referendums, Curtis said, and it would be his hope voters educate themselves on the issues and avoid any "outlandish remarks" that are being shared on the matter.
But even without the propositions, Curtis said, the long lines at early voting can be attributed to Layton being the most populous city in the county, and the fact this is presidential election, which traditionally has a high number of voters.
"I am pleased to see the people vote to have their voice heard through the process," Curtis said.
Those wanting to avoid lines to cast their ballot can still vote by mail, Beckstead said. But based on the low percentage of voters participating in early voting, she suspects Election Day lines could be just as long as they are now.
"We have the privilege and opportunity to vote and if it is going to take a little effort, it is going to take a little effort," Beckstead said.
Early voting locations in Davis County will be open today at various times and all locations will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday. For a complete list of times and places of early voting locations in the Top of Utah, visit vote.utah.gov.